Ember van Woerkom
Ember Maria Rose van Woerkom
February 19, 1970 - May 24, 2021
Ember Maria Rose Van Woerkom passed away peacefully in Medford, OR, less than five minutes after being removed from her ventilator at 3:15 pm PST on May 24, 2021.
Ember was truly a kind and loving member of her close knit family and to those lucky enough to come into contact with her during her lifetime.
Ember was preceded in death by her father Hugo van Woerkom, having left this side of life last year. She is survived by her mother Melchia Crowne and her sister, Melchia Kutches, husband Richard and their daughter, Thalia. "Aunty Ember" was always there for Thalia, talking to her a few times a week on the phone and serving as a best friend, sounding board and even handed advisor.
Ember was born February 19, 1970 in Kingston, NY, attended Anna Devine Elementary school in Rifton, NY, Myron J Michael (MJM) Junior high in Kingston and graduated in 1988 from Kingston High School (KHS) Home of the Tigers! She then moved to San Francisco, CA with her sister and father. She worked Retail Management in SF at Papyrus and as a Security Analyst in Walnut Creek at Denalect Alarm.
Ember met her future husband through a mutual friend in Concord and the marriage ended in divorce.
Ember had a tough time getting back on her feet after her divorce, moving in with Melchia's family in Concord at first, then living on her own in Antioch, CA for a time and finally moving up to Hornbrook, CA to settle in with her mother. She worked on and off at various odd jobs until getting sick this February, eventually losing her 3 month long battle with failing health on May 24, 2021.
Ember rarely turned down a cool tattoo or a brave new body piercing. She will always be remembered by her electric personality, great sense of humor and wonderful storytelling talent. Even this writer, who once considered himself a fairly decent writer and storyteller, would quickly concede the floor to Ember once she took over a room.
Ember's path through life was a little different than that of most people. Her genes weren't designed to work a normal career 9 to 5 type of job. She was much more of an artistic soul, a real free spirit. Ember Maria Rose van Woerkom was more like a Sunflower, she grew and then blossomed, shining brightly for a moment in time, too short for those closest to her, then she slowly faded away at the end.
We will miss you eternally and always remember Ember, our lovely Sunflower.

Published by San Francisco Chronicle from May 26 to May 30, 2021.
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4 Entries
Ember was so loving and sweet. She had a beautiful heart. I met her at work in Concord CA. I was a single mom and she would play with my daughter with such gentleness, kindness and fun! Ember called me everyday after my older brother passed away..again, her kindness meant the world to me. Years later I'd see her at Peets coffee where she worked for a short time. My daughter in high school at the time admired her tattoos. Ember would share the meaning behind each and every one. She was absolutely a beautiful soul. She touched my life and I'll always be thankful and grateful. I will keep her family in my prayers. I'm so very sorry for the pain and loss they are going through.
Cheryl Pickolick
July 10, 2021
Ember was a classmate from elementary school through high school. May Ember Rest In Peace and fly an angels wings.
Kevin O’Brien
June 5, 2021
This obituary captured the lovely soul of Ember. True to her name she spread embers of light to all who knew her.❤
Cook Jackson
June 1, 2021
I never had the pleasure of meeting Ember. But goodness was that girl loved by her Mama, and I am sure that she knew she was loved. Melchia’s love is so encompassing and enduring (and fierce), that though I never got to meet the bright ember that Ember will always be, the love surely abides. Blessings, sweet Ember. I didn’t know you, but your life on this plane meant a great deal through my knowledge of your mother’s love for you, and surely yours for her.
Gaye Theresa Johnson
May 26, 2021
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